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Silt, debris and waste

Find out about silt, debris, and waste removal and management after Cyclone Gabrielle.

The Silt Recovery Taskforce is making headway with supporting locals clean up from Cyclone Gabrielle and has set up systems to manage silt, debris, and waste to keep as much as possible away from the landfill. Additional Government funding announced in February 2024 allows the taskforce to continue its mahi ahead of winter, and will enable an estimated 600,000 cubic meters of sediment and debris to be cleared.

The Taskforce was set up jointly between Hawke’s Bay Regional Council and Hastings District Council.

Requests for the collection of silt or wood or waste debris has now closed. If you have an enquiry please feel free to contact the Regional Council waste team on 0800 108 838 or for general enquiries our customer service team at 06 835 9200.

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Useful links

  • Community Wellbeing and Hauora Grants are now open through the Regional Public Service and Te Whatu Ora partnership. The focus of these grants is to support the health and wellbeing of those directly impacted by Cyclone Gabrielle as they adapt to changes in their lives and navigate next steps in the recovery process
  • Hastings District Council has a waste space on its website to help residents reduce, reuse and recycle.  Their waste guide is a helpful search engine to give you some guidance on what to do with what you've got.

Waste streams

The Taskforce has collected over 1,450,000 cubic metres of silt around Te Matau-a-Māui.

A six-zone system is being used up to collect the unprecedented silt dumped on orchards, farms, roads, and residential properties. There are dedicated contractors in each zone working to collect the silt. Silt samples from silt deposit sites are being taken several times a week, and to date all the result have come back clean.

The taskforce is looking at a range of options for storing and using silt in the future, and working closely with other councils, industry, and landowners to develop solutions for the region.

There are five silt deposit sites in Esk, Pākōwhai, Omarunui, Mōteo Pā and Dartmoor.

We estimate that we've cleaned up close to 155,000 tonnes of woody debris.

In the Wairoa district, we’ve appointed a project manager to deal with the huge amount of debris around the district, and particularly along the coast, focussing on Mohaka, Māhia, Wairoa, and around bridges. We’re also working along the Napier coast and in CHB in Pōrangahau, along the Waipawa River, and in Kairakau.

Recovery methods that we are looking at will likely include stacking above the high-water line, carting to waste, and mulching.

The Taskforce has two mixed waste processing sites in Pākōwhai and Esk Valley to deal with the piles of silt mixed in with waste.

The sites are sorting through the piles of silt mixed with waste that get dropped off, with plastic, concrete, wood, tanalised timber, rubber metal, horticultural fabric, and more. The rubbish and silt gets separated by machinery and the clean silt (once tested) is then taken to a silt deposit site which the rubbish is sorted into piles and ideally reused.

Silt taskforce video updates

Check out some of the Silt Recovery Taskforce’s videos that cover how we’re moving silt, looking after the land and our community’s health, hear from people on the ground, and the need for the mahi to continue.

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